John 17:15 – “My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.” (NIV 1978)
My Musings – We do not have to live secluded lives just because the world is a dark place. God has given us protection so that the darkness will not overcome us. Rather He sends us out into the world so that we can help dispel the darkness.
My Advice – Live a life that reflects Christ. Be noticeably different from those around you because you have Jesus as Savior.
INTRODUCTION – YOU MEAN IT MAY NOT BE WRONG…
If It Isn’t Clear? – I go even further back than that. Ten years after The Great War, as we used to call it. Before we knew enough to number them. You miss that kind of action, sir? No, I miss that kind of clarity. (Wabash/Houseman and Higgins/Robertson – Three Days of the Condor)
If You Don’t Get Caught? – Boy, what is it with you people? You think not getting caught in a lie is the same thing as telling the truth? (Turner/Redford – Three Days of the Condor)
If It’s A Gray Area? – You are such a boy scout. You see everything in black and white. No, no, no! Not black and white Ritter, right and wrong! (Ritter and Ryan/Ford – Clear and Present Danger)
If… – What are some other ways that we Continue reading “Whatever Happened to Right & Wrong?”
Ephesians 6:12-14 – For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark-world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms, Therefore, put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand. Stand firm then, (NIV 1978)
Preparing To Do Battle
- Why is it important to know our enemy (“not against flesh and blood“) when choosing our weapons?
- What is so important about using all (“full”) the armor?
- Are there instances where it is all right to give a little ground (i.e. to not “stand your ground”) in order to make greater gains in the long run? Why (or why not)?
- What happens when we go into battle with the wrong weapons (don’t take a knife to a gunfight and don’t fight spiritual battles with worldly weapons)?
All Dressed Up But Not Ready To Fight. Unless . . .
Ephesians 6:8 – And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. (NIV 1984)
- What role does praying “in the Spirit” play? Why isn’t the “full armor” complete without it?
- We have on the full armor. Our prayer life is dynamic. What happens if we are not “alert“?
Follow The Battle Plan
- God is our ultimate power source (“be strong in the Lord”).
- We need to be in full armor.
- Willingly giving ground is not an option.
- Prayer is vital to our preparedness.
- If we are not alert, all our preparations will be compromised.
- Don’t let the heat of the battle cause us to lose sight of why we are fighting in the first place.
Ezra 9:9 – “God has not deserted us in our bondage.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – When we are in “bondage,” it is natural for us to conclude that God has deserted us. But He will not take us where He will not sustain us.
My Advice – Whenever you feel oppressed or in “bondage,” look diligently for the Lord. He is right there with you. He has not deserted you. If you cannot find Him, perhaps it is time to consider whether it is you that have abandoned Him. All the more reason to seek Him out.
Don’t Be Afraid
2 Kings 6:16 – “Don’t be afraid,” the prophet answered. “Those who are with us are more than those who are with them.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – We cannot even begin to fathom or imagine the heavenly resources that are backing us up when we encounter challenges in life. But we can know for sure that they are more than sufficient and are greater than the challenge.
My Advice – Do not let difficulties and oppression discourage you or get you down. The only thing we have to fear is our own lack of faith in God’s ability or willingness to help us through the rough patches.
The Battle Is The Lord’s
1 Samuel 16:47 – “All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s and He will give all of you into our hands.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – The advantage or victory is not always to the best prepared, the best equipped or the strongest. With God behind you, success is assured even without these “advantages.”
My Advice – Do not rely too heavily on learning, or wealth or strength or privilege or position to get ahead in life. Make sure you are going the way that God is taking you. He is more than an equalizer, He is the ensurer.
Ruth 2:12 – “May the Lord repay you for what you have done. May you be richly rewarded by the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge.” (NIV 1978)
My Musing – We will never be disappointed by God when we look to Him for refuge.
My Advice – There are so many places you can go for answers and comfort. Many will disappoint you or let you down. Go to the one source, God, who will never disappoint you or let you down. You may get answers that you do not like, but you will never get answers that are wrong.